Content-type: text/html Ray Manning

Monday, December 2, 2013 10:00 PM


Tuesday and Wednesday are productive days at work in between meetings. I finish a few tasks off and lay out a framework to support testing when that occurs later. By Wednesday afternoon I am starting to lose steam, though, as the long weekend and some extra time off at Thanksgiving draws closer. I lift heavy weights on Tuesday and don't really feel any pain and then go for a long walk on Wednesday. Times are chaotic with Person Ti_Ca as he starts orientation and training for a new job, gets the highest score in the class on a semester-long essay for one class, and springs a last minute "Oh this is due in two days" essay assignment on me (that he needs help with).

On Thursday I'm on a mission at work. In between meetings and a presentation, I want to get a scripted task started so that it can run during the week that I will be away from work for Thanksgiving. I manage to set the script off and I hope to have some good results when I return to work next Friday. Yes, the company has taken the Friday after Thanksgiving away from us as a holiday to save costs. Do they really think it will save costs to offset the loss of employee morale? Since it rained today I drove the car rather than getting the newly waxed motorcycle all wet. But traffic isn't bad and I squeeze in heavy session with the weights and relax a bit before helping Person Ti_Ca with homework. And helping him practice for his new job.

There is a threat of rain on Friday, but I tell Derrick "If it is dry when I wake up then I'm going to ride". So I start north on the Los Angeles river, pick Derrick up near the Whittier Narrows dam, and continue on back down the San Gabriel river trail to the ocean. My ride totals 65 miles today. I take a shower and get ready to go get the car washed but drops of rain start down. It's probably not wise to wash the car right now. Instead Person Ti_Ca go buy some things he needs for work, we watch a recorded Modern Family episode, and then I get ready for the plumbers to come and de-lime my tankless water heater. The plumber comes and de-limes the tankless water heater according to the procedure but the electronic controller is still throwing an error. So I'll give it a day to run water through it and then get ready to call the manufacturer. Later Person T_U picks up Person Ti_Ca and me and we drive to Veterans stadium for the high school football playoff game between Long Beach Poly (Person T_U's alma matter) and another team. We get to the stadium and buy our tickets and we are early for the game (for once). We wander around and discover that Long Beach Poly is not playing this game, but is playing 30 minutes away. We debate what to do and I finally say we should ask for a refund. We ask for a refund "Because we thought Poly was playing" and the ticket man is laughing at us. But in the end he realizes the mistake and refunds the ticket prices.

Saturday starts with a 35 mile ride on the road bicycle. This is the shortest ride that I've taken on the new road bicycle, but I'm physically hungover from yesterday's longer ride and I want to save some of my legs for upcoming rides. After the ride and a shower I watch a very wild, raining and not-raining Brasilian Grand Prix qualifying session. A bit later I help the nieghbor lady remove her old car battery and install a new one. I've done this for her before and its easy to do, so we both know that I'm going to volunteer to help her out. Person Ti_Ca gets called in to work a bit early, so in the afternoon I work on a troublesome little problem on a website and try to make some progress.

Sunday starts with a mountain bicycle ride to the end of the bicycle trail (along the ocean) and return. I wanted to ride longer, but I was tired before I started the ride. I work on the roses, grab a warm shower, and run some errands before watching the Brasilian Grand Prix where my favorite driver wins again in conditions where the rain threatents to come throughout the entire race. In the afternoon I try to track down more troublesome little problems in websites that keep appearing when we do a system backup. I'm ready to declare no more backups because they cause more problems than they potentially stave off. It's a slow day as I watch some football and relax and do some homework with Person Ti_Ca.

On Monday I am feeling lazy. I was going to go for a long road bicycle ride but settle instead for the mountain bicycle ride to the end of bicycle trail along the ocean and return. At the end I put in 4 extra miles for the heck of it. After a shower I call the tankless water heater company and they say you have to keep flushing the water heater. Instead of spending money on another plumber visit, I go to Home Depot and buy the piping and pump needed to flush the water heater. And I start in on the task just before 1 pm. Since I watched the plumber do it the other day, hopefully I know what I'm doing and will have the equipment (cheaper than one plumber visit) to do the flushing in the future. I've set up the flsuhing process and once I get all of the hose conenctions tight, it just runs on its own for 45 minutes. At the same time I'm backing up my computer files to an external hard drive and checking the progress on both. While these tasks are occuring and while Person Ti_Ca is at work and at school, I start cataloging and filing interesting projects for development in third world countries. One is a water heater that can sterilize medical equipment prior to surgeries and one is a measurement device for water tables. I guess this is really the kickoff to my retirement as I start cataloging and brainstorming for ideas to work on in the future. I also have youtube running in the background where I play a number of old songs (Guess WHo, Steppenwolf, Three Dog Night, etc), house music, and Myanamar (Burmese) pop music while trying to get paperwork in order.

Tuesday starts with me being lazy again. Instead of a long road bicycle ride I try another recovery ride on the mountain bicycle down to the end of the ocean trail and with a few extra added miles as yesterday. After a shower I run some errands and get the Word Rally Car washed and it gets put back in the garage for safe keeping. During my errands I stop in at the library but it isn't open yet, so I just put my old books in the dropbox. I start the tankless water heater flushing procedure again because the error code hasn't cleared. If this does not clear the error code than I will need some help from the manufacturer. As I'm flushing the tankless water heater I relax and flip through television channels becasue DirecTV has some freebies now. It has been a long time since I watched television on a weekday. Later in the evening I help Person Ti_Ca with his homework before heading off for sleep.

When I wake up on Wednesday morning I have a slight fever and I do not go cycling. Instead I do small things around the house and then at 11:30 I start walking to the library. It is a fairly long walk in order to get some low grade exercise in. I pick up two books and walk back home. On the way home I stop in at the grocery store but they have no apple pies. They have 100 pumpkin pies laying out and not a single apple pie. After waxing the gold rims on the World Rally Car I grab a bag and add to the day's walking by walking over to Hof's Hut to buy an apple pie. When I get home I've probably walked 90 minutes today. The rest of the day is spent reading and watching some movies on television (where DirecTV has given me a free premium channel weekend).

By Thanksgiving morning my body temperature is back to normal. Thus I set out on a long Thanksgiving morning road bicycle ride. I see a number of the usual suspects out riding and by the time I'm near the aquarium I run into a rider that remembers me when Derrick and I rode with him and his friends. He and his riding partners are slow today and I'm nearing the end of 60 miles, so it works out well. Afterwards I rush through the recorded Lions game and am joyed that they demolished their division rivals today. The rest of THanksgiving is slow and Person Ti_Ca goes out shopping with friends near 10 pm (and doesn't return until 7:30 am on Friday).

Our company has decided that taking the Friday after Thanksgiving as a holiday away from the employees will improve worker morale. Thus for only the second time in 27 years I work on the Friday after Thanksgiving. (The other time was when we were testing a satellite trying to rush to make a launch date.) The roads are wet but I take the motorcycle to work (which has a bit of a hard time starting but does start). At mid day the rain is comign down pretty heavily and the few people who are at work ask if I need a ride home. But I convince them that I am fine. This Friday at work is productive because I can work away and not be bothered with interruptions and the surrounding people who are very loud and waste hours at a time talking about college football and college basketball. At noon we take a co-worker out for lunch because she is leaving the company and today is her last day. When it is time to go home the roads are wet but the sky is clear and there is no rain. Well, maybe a bit on the way home but I barely get wet. I start back in lifting weights with the same weights as before and have a good workout. Person Ti_Ca go and get a new phone for Person Ti_Ca on balck Friday near 6 pm and there is no wait. And later Person T_U picks us up to go to the high school football playoff game where is alma matter, Long Beach Poly, plays horribly and loses 30-0.

Saturday is cold but I take the mountain bicycle out to the end of the trail and add some extra miles in at the end. My short days used to be down to the aquarium and back home for about a 70 minute ride. Now my short days are longer and take up about 2 hours. After a shower Person Ti_Ca, Person T_U, and Person D_G and I go out to lunch for Thai food. We have a good visit. When I get home I go to work on updating websites from google maps version 2 to version 3. It doesn't sound like much, but most of the classes and objects are different so it takes me a few hours to do. Person Ti_Ca and I then do homework for almost two hours and then I relax as Person Ti_Ca visits a friend.

Sunday starts with a ride where I meet up with Derrick and we do our "usual" 50 mile ride or so. Near the end we tag along with a few other riders until I have to leave the ride to go home. I'm hoping that Derrick can stay with these other riders as they will pull him against the headwind back to his house, but I see he's dropped off the back just after I leave (and I look back to see he's dropped off). Later Derrick texts me and says he lost the pace and then just struggled back home against the wind. Sunday is a warm sunny day and I just relax with the doors and windows of the house open and do little things around the house. Later at night Person Ti_Ca and I do homework as the weekend winds down.

Monday is a productive day at work as I put my head down and make progress on some tedious details for various models and simulations. I only attend one meeting and have long periods of uninterrupted productivity. After work the bike barely starts and I rush on home to workout with the weights. Afterwards I spray some WD-40 in the motorcycle lock to try and free it up. Later Person Ti_Ca and I do some homework and I have a teleconference with some of the web people.